A career in speech-language pathology can open doors for your own future, as well as the futures of your prospective patients. The median annual salary for a speech-language pathologist with a Master's degree is close to $75,000.
Here are some career paths you could use your degree in.
As a speech-language pathologist, you can work with special needs children in the school setting. While many of these children have already been diagnosed and need a treatment plan, a number of the children will still need a diagnosis, particularly in more poor neighborhoods.
Children on the Autism spectrum can greatly benefit from this service. Many Autistic kids have a difficult time communicating in socially acceptable ways. Children that stutter and have hearing loss can also be treated. You will come up with an individualized plan specific for each child so that they can thrive in school.
You can use your degree in a hospital for many different reasons. You can specialize in children or adults with ongoing medical issues that need a diagnosis. Or you can work with those that have sustained a catastrophic injury affecting their ability to communicate.
Brain tumors, car accidents, and falls are all major contributors to someone losing their ability to use language. It will be your job to assist these patients in a diagnosis and treatment plan so that they can live more productive and satisfying lives.
3. Residential Care
A speech-language pathologist is desperately needed in residential care facilities. These patients are both young and old, having been afflicted with many different ailments. Your services could be used for stroke and even dementia patients.
You will also be afforded the opportunity to work with patients who have been affected by horrific injuries, such as in a car crash. Many of these injuries require a long-term stint in a rehabilitation facility while the brain and body heals. Stroke victims also need the aid of SPLs (speech-language pathologists). A patient's ability to communicate is imperative for their recovery.
4. Social Work
Social workers have many different titles and jobs. As a speech-language pathologist in social work, you will work with those in the community that aren't as fortunate as the rest. You will treat children that have been abused or neglected, and even adults in the same vein.
A child could have been physically injured through abuse, or have had the speech issues their whole life but have been neglected to the point of no treatment or diagnosis. You can step in here and make a huge difference in their quality of life and future.
5. Occupational Therapy
An occupational therapist is separate from a speech-language pathologist, but you can work alongside an O.T. to fulfill the needs of your patients. Occupational therapy is there to teach important skills to thrive in day-to-day life. Speech and vocalization are two of the biggest aspects of being able to carry on a normal, or somewhat normal, life.
As a speech-language pathologist working in Occupational Therapy, you will teach, or retrain, patients to effectively use speech and communication skills in order to progress through daily life. You will be instrumental in people going back to work or school.
Choosing a useful major that won't put you into needless debt is one of the most common concerns among college students. Considering a degree and future in the speech-language pathology field is a smart option for securing your future while helping your fellow human.